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(Updates with sugar cane production starting in second paragraph.)
June 8 (Bloomberg) -- Mauritius’s sugar production will probably decline 7.2 percent this year to its lowest level in 12 years because sugar cane ripened less than expected, the Mauritius Chamber of Agriculture said.
Production is forecast at 420,000 metric tons compared with 452,473 tons a year earlier, Jocelyn Kwok, secretary-general of the Port Louis-based chamber, said in an e-mailed statement today. The output will be the lowest since 1999 when 373,294 tons was produced, according to data from the chamber.
“Climatic conditions favorable to cane ripening in May did not have expected results,” Kwok said, following the first meeting of the crop estimate coordinating committee today.
Sugar cane is the Indian Ocean island nation’s main crop, making up about 80 percent of land under cultivation and 63 percent of agricultural exports, according to the Chamber of Agriculture. Net revenue from sugar for the 2010 harvest was 6.1 billion rupees ($221 million), Jean-Noel Humbert, chief executive officer of the Mauritius Sugar Syndicate said on Feb. 18.
About 4.2 million tons of sugar cane is expected to be harvested this year compared with 4.36 million tons in 2010, the chamber said. This year’s harvest will start next week and end in the third week of December, Kwok said.
“Sugar content level might improve if climatic conditions remain close to the normal up to the end of November,” he said.
--Editors: Gordon Bell, Philip Sanders
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